Available on this page are resources regarding strengthening education for all learners. All resources here are available to the public for download.
On this webpage, you will find a set of presentation slide decks that highlight various focus areas in education. These decks present facts, charts, data and other information reflecting progress and challenges in improving education, and U.S. Department of Education programs and initiatives that aim to close achievement gaps and foster equal educational opportunities.
These resources will be updated periodically.
Feedback related to the presentation slide decks may be sent to the U.S. Department of Education for consideration at the following address: firstname.lastname@example.org.
President Obama has set a bold goal, to get Americans back to where we were a generation ago—the global leaders in college completion. Achieving this goal is vital to the United States remaining competitive economically, and fulfilling our country's creed as a place where every child—including children who are growing up in poverty, or who are otherwise vulnerable—have every chance to succeed. This goal has driven a powerful set of reforms. Across the country, there is real progress, but we have much further to go.
A child's beginning years are critical for building the early foundation needed for success in school and in life. Educators and leading economists agree that high-quality early learning programs can help to level the playing field for disadvantaged children.
It's clear what it means to be prepared for tomorrow's economy. Already, three-quarters of the fastest-growing occupations require education beyond a high school diploma. America's K-12 schools must work hard each day to prepare students for that reality.
Research shows that teacher quality has the greatest impact on student achievement among school-related factors. Understanding the profound impact of teachers and leaders on student achievement, the U.S. Department of Education is focused on assisting states and districts to support and improve teaching and school leadership.
The United States has become a global leader, in large part, through the hard work of its scientists, engineers and innovators. Yet today, that position is threatened as comparatively few American students pursue expertise in STEM fields. President Obama has set a priority of increasing the number of students and teachers who are proficient in these vital fields.
Preparing students for success requires a different educational experience than it did even a generation ago. That's why there is such a sense of urgency to turn around our nation's chronically lowest-performing schools.
All children should grow up free from fear and violence. The Obama administration is committed to ensuring that all children live in safe neighborhoods and attend nurturing schools that provide them with the services and supports that they need to thrive.
Education systems only are as strong as the expectations they hold for their students. But, for too long, our nation's schools have not set consistently rigorous goals for students. It's critical that, collectively, we raise the bar so that all students are held to high learning standards that will ensure they have the skills to compete in today's global, knowledge-based economy.
Technology and data are increasingly becoming the "how" in education. Technology helps teachers to present information and assess learning. It enables students to interact with content in engaging ways. And data is critical for teachers to analyze student performance and determine areas of strength and weakness in instruction.
Today, three-quarters of the fastest-growing occupations require more education and training than a high school diploma. Yet nearly half of students who begin college in this country never finish. To address these challenges, the Obama administration has taken historic steps to help students afford and access a college education.
America has worked to make its public schools "the great equalizer," ensuring every child would have the opportunity to join a thriving middle class. Too often, poverty endures and schools struggle to meet the needs of the most vulnerable students. Through "Ladders of Opportunity," the Obama administration will establish comprehensive, coordinated approaches to improving support for at-risk students.
Examples of Rapidly Improving Cities [PDF, 378K]